Liquid Hymn

I am fascinated by the human relationship with nature. Are we connected beyond the need for nourishment? Do we want to be? I think about our impulse to wall ourselves off and keep nature out, and I wonder if this really makes people more secure. Underneath nature’s beauty there is something impenetrable and resistant to the human need for meaning. Things come to life, breath, flourish if they are lucky, and then die. Nature is brimming with an energy that can seem indiscriminate, snuffing out life as easily as it creates it. At times it gives me an overwhelming sense that we are a part of something special but fleeting, and that the desire for solace and certainty is as unreasonable as asking the sky if we will be here tomorrow.

Critical Reception

"Imagine artwork from the Audubon Society melding with psychedelic art of the 1960s, and you have a sense of the new canvases from Oakland's J.S. Weis.  Animals emerge from a flotilla of colorful matter that resembles the earth or its atmosphere but is hard to pinpoint.  It's all very mysterious and all very intoxicating."

--Jonathan Curiel, SF Weekly

Layered Paper Detail

This gallery contains details of the paper texture in the Liquid Hymn series.


We are the cosmos made conscious and life is the means by which the universe understands itself.
— Brian Cox
Finally, from what we now know about the cosmos, to think that all this was created for just one species among the tens of millions of species who live on one planet circling one of a couple of hundred billion stars that are located in one galaxy among hundreds of billions of galaxies, all of which are in one universe among perhaps an infinite number of universes all nestled within a grand cosmic multiverse, is provincially insular and anthropocentrically blinkered. Which is more likely? That the universe was designed just for us, or that we see the universe as having been designed just for us?
— Michael Shermer, Why Darwin Matters: The Case Against Intelligent Design